A1 Journal article (refereed)
Decolonising European minds through Heritage (2020)

Turunen, J. (2020). Decolonising European minds through Heritage. International Journal of Heritage Studies, 26(10), 1013-1028. https://doi.org/10.1080/13527258.2019.1678051

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editorsTurunen, Johanna

Journal or seriesInternational Journal of Heritage Studies



Publication year2020


Issue number10

Pages range1013-1028

PublisherTaylor & Francis

Publication countryUnited Kingdom

Publication languageEnglish


Publication open accessNot open

Publication channel open access

Publication is parallel published (JYX)https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/77664


By analysing three museums exhibition, this article investigates how the history of European colonialism is approached in an attempt to identify potential for decolonising European minds. The case studies consist of a temporary exhibition (2016–2017) concerning German colonialism at the Deutsches Historisches Museum in Berlin; the permanent exhibition of the House of European History in Brussels and the permanent exhibition of the Sagres Promontory (Portugal), a heritage site related to the conquest of the Americas. The analysis will focus on three aspects: 1) acknowledgement of connections between colonial histories and their contemporary influences in and for Europe; 2) the role of historical consciousness when dealing with the history of colonialism and 3) re-narrations of colonial history through enabling new voices. Ultimately this approach involves ‘past presencing’, in bringing the many connections of Europe’s colonial past and postcolonial present together. It is argued, that although museums are increasingly engaging with decolonisation, there exists a need to better include decolonisation of European minds in these processes. Heritage as a future-oriented project and a tool to manage memory can be used to support historical consciousness and imagine a just future.

Keywordsdecolonisationcultural heritagemeanings (semantics)museums

Free keywordsEurope; decolonisation; heritage; meaning making; museums

Contributing organizations

Related projects

Ministry reportingYes

Reporting Year2020

JUFO rating2

Last updated on 2024-22-04 at 12:18